Sun. Oct 24th, 2021

Germany extends lockdown to 14 February and tightens restrictions; US deaths pass 400,000; Beijing steps up Covid measures in response to biggest outbreak since December

4.22am GMT

In sport news:

Dean Smith has described the “very scary” scale of the Covid-19 outbreak that forced Aston Villa’s entire squad into isolation this month but says he is in favour of continuing the season.

Related: Dean Smith wants season to continue despite Covid cases at Aston Villa

4.01am GMT

In case you missed it: China’s health authorities have again stepped up anti-pandemic measures in response to its ongoing outbreak – the worst since early 2020, and just weeks away from the start of Chinese New Year. Authorities said today there were 103 new cases confirmed on Tuesday, including 88 local transmissions.

The numbers are dropping in Hebei province – it recorded 19 new cases – but there is concern about a worsening situation in Jilin, which recorded 46. Millions more people have been put under lockdown, in Songyuan city, and Harbin city in Heilongjiang has temporarily shut down businesses and public venues.

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